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Cases within territorial limits not entertained in principal seat
September, 13th 2011

The registrar general of Madras high court on Monday said that only such writ petitions where the jurisdiction falls within the principal seat are entertained and numbered.

Recently a PIL sought a direction to the registrar general of Madras High Court not to list the writ petitions which have territorial jurisdiction with Madurai bench, in the principal seat.

When the matter came up before the bench comprising Justice P Jyothimani and Justice M M Sundresh, a counter-affidavit was filed on behalf of the registrar general. of Madras High Court.

"The averments made in the affidavit to the effect that cases designated to Madurai bench were taken away by undue influence and attached to the principal seat is untenable and denied," said R Vimala, registrar general.

In the counter, she submitted, "Whenever any writ petition is filed before the principal seat or the permanent bench seat, the registry examines the matter and numbers the case if it is found that the cause of action has arisen within the jurisdiction of the respective seats.

Wherever it is found by the registry that there is no jurisdiction, the papers are returned to the counsel on the ground of want of jurisdiction. Wherever there is doubt regarding territorial jurisdiction, the registry submits an office note for maintainability regarding jurisdiction to the judges concerned for orders and depending on the orders passed, the papers are either numbered and posted before court or returned."

The counter further said, "When matters are filed before the principal seat at Madras and also at Madurai bench after getting necessary orders from the Chief Justice, the cases in Madurai bench are listed with cases pending in the principal seat at Madras in order to avoid divergent views in the subject."

"With regard to the allegation that writ petition under Article 226 are being filed at the Principal Seat though there is territorial jurisdiction for the same and that the same is being done with the knowledge of the Bench is absolutely false and denied" said Registrar General.

The counter affidavit made it clear that the registrar general of Madras high court, and registrar (Judicial) Madurai Bench have been strictly adhering and following the Presidential Orders - The case falling within the respective jurisdiction will have to be heard accordingly.

It was further submitted that only such writ petitions where the jurisdiction falls within the Principal Seat are entertained and numbered. Whenever there are doubts, as stated already, notes are put up to the Judges on the question of maintainability and only after the court orders, the matters are numbered and posted for hearing.

The principles laid by the Supreme court in the case referred to above are followed by which only case where the cause of action arises either wholly or in the part within the Jurisdiction of the Principal Seat are numbered and listed before the Principal bench at Madras

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